Janey “leaning toward” requiring Boston workers get vaccinated

Boston Statehouse
Kim Janey

Former Boston City Council President Kim Janey, 55, composes herself as she begins to speak after being sworn in as Boston’s new mayor at City Hall, Wednesday, March 24, 2021, in Boston. Janey, who is the city’s first female and first person of color to take the office, replaces Marty Walsh who resigned Monday evening to become President Joe Biden’s labor secretary. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

BOSTON (SHNS) – Acting Boston Mayor Kim Janey is “leaning toward” mandating COVID-19 vaccines for the city’s 18,000-person workforce, she said Thursday as she detailed a “marked increase” in viral activity in the city and stressed the importance of vaccination.

Janey reiterated that masks will remain required for Boston Public Schools students in the fall, and she said her goal is to make sure every city worker is vaccinated.

“If it takes a mandate to keep the city of Boston employees safe, that is what we’ll do with very thoughtful, worker-centered approaches,” she said. The Delta variant is now the dominant strain of COVID-19 in Boston and poses a “new threat to those who remain unvaccinated,” Janey said. “The longer we linger with large numbers of unvaccinated residents, the more opportunity there is for the COVID virus to mutate again and prolong this pandemic,” she said. “For Boston residents who have delayed their vaccine, please do not wait for the Delta variant to catch up with you.”

Boston’s positive test rate stands at 2.7 percent, the mayor said. As of Tuesday, the city had recorded 704 new COVID-19 cases in a two-week period, up from 147 during the previous two weeks, she said. More than 60 percent of new cases are in the 20-39 age range, Janey said. She said the city aims to work with restaurants and bars on strategies for getting their patrons vaccinated, and will bring mobile vaccine clinics to events, bars and restaurants where younger residents gather.

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